In addition to the diving board and the weather, The Sims 3: Seasons also brings back the aliens. Not only are aliens abducting Sims on occasion, but they may also stop in for a visit, which gives Sims a chance to meet and befriend them. I have yet to encounter any aliens during my gameplay, but I hear collecting space rocks and keeping them in your inventory increases the chance that an alien might visit during the night.

Since The Sims 3 was released, I've been waiting for the opportunity to let my Sim swim in the ocean. Seasons makes it possible! Sims can't swim in lakes or ponds from what I've been able to tell, but they now have the option to take a dip in the ocean, which gives Sims another reason to go to the beach, especially if they don't have a pool.

Behind the scenes, you can adjust the weather in the settings to control which weather is featured and how frequently the seasons change. In build mode, there's a cool blue print architecture mode that allows you to lay down preset rooms to build a house (or add onto it). There are also plenty of new objects to keep your Sims house updated for the changing weather. That includes a horseshoe court, soccer net, snowboarding half pipe and an umbrella.

The Sims 3: Seasons isn't a game-changer the way World Adventures and Showtime were, but in terms of delivering on what many of us have been waiting for, it certainly succeeds. I was also grateful to note that I didn't experience any lags in the game when the weather change. If I recall, that was an issue when The Sims 2 incorporated weather. On the down-side, I did experience numerous game crashes while I played it. Crashes occurred with no rhyme or reason (and I have no custom content installed, so that shouldn't be an issue).

If the crashing is a bug (as opposed to just an issue with my computer), hopefully it'll be fixed soon, because it's a pretty time-consuming one. Other than that, I have no complaints about the EP. Is it worth the retail cost of $39.99? Like I said, it's not a game-changer in that it doesn't add a substantial amount of additional game-play beyond visiting the festival. But it's one of the most fun and picturesque expansion packs to join the collection for The Sims 3, which makes it a nice refresher to a game that's been around for more than three years.

Players: 1
Platforms: PC/Mac
Developer: EA Play/The Sims Studio
Publisher: Electronic Arts
ESRB: Teen

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